Serpentine Walls Release Party #3 — Locations Rock!

October 30, 2013

Location has played a role in all of my books. I usually set my stories in places that I’ve lived. My first novella, Electricity Sparks Inside Of Me, was set in the Washington, D.C. area where I grew up. I currently live in Oregon and most of Mercury In Retrograde was set at an Oregon river rafting lodge. Stay Right Here was set in another city I have lived in and dearly love: San Francisco.

Serpentine Walls is a contemporary novel set at the University of Virginia (U.Va. for short) in Charlottesville, Virginia. I chose U.Va. because I went to school there many years ago and it was fun to revisit the old alma mater in my imagination.

U.Va. has a beautiful and historic campus the core of which was designed by Thomas Jefferson in the 1800s. Central to the campus (called “grounds” at U.Va.) is The Lawn.

The cover of Serpentine Walls shows my two MCs, Pete and Matthew, standing on The Lawn with a bunch of white columns in the background. Those columns line a walkway that runs down each side of The Lawn and is called the Colonnades. Here’s a view of The Lawn and the Colonnades:

That building you see at the far end is Old Cabell Hall where the music department is. Pete and his other main romantic interest, Aidan, attend rehearsals for the student chorus there, and Matthew likes to play piano in the practice rooms.

Here’s another view of the Colonnades as one walks through them. Pete, Matthew and the gang do a lot of walking along the Colonnades as they go to and from classes.

The Corner is mentioned in the story (and the name confused my editors at first). The Corner is several blocks of shops and restaurants right across from the university.  Pete and his friends hang out in various places at The Corner:

And what about the serpentine walls alluded to in the title?  Here’s one:

The serpentine walls are only mentioned in the book once, when Matthew and Pete have a misunderstanding at Professor R’s party in his faculty home. Matthew splits and Pete runs after him through the back garden and along the serpentine wall.

I have loved every place I’ve lived, which is probably why I like to revisit them in my books.

GIFTS! Because it’s my birthday, I will be giving out some gifts.  All you have to do is answer one (or more) of the questions I’ll be asking through the day during the party. One of you will win a signed copy of Serpentine Walls and three more of you will win a free e-book of one of my novellas (your choice).

How about you?  Are you living in a place you love?  If not, where do you want to be? What has been your favorite place to live?

Serpentine Walls order link

CJane Elliott website

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Breaking Birthday Present News!  I just heard from those awesome folks at Dreamspinner that EVERYONE gets gifts!  With the code CJaneBlog you’ll get 25% off all of my books and all Coming of Age books in the Dreamspinner Store. It’s good until 5 p.m. EDT on Friday, November 1!

14 Responses to “Serpentine Walls Release Party #3 — Locations Rock!”

  1. Holly W. says:

    I love North Carolina, I just don’t necessarily want to live in Durham the rest of my life. I was raised here. Anywhere at the Outer Banks would be ideal

  2. CJane Elliott says:

    Holly, I love the Outer Banks. I grew up in Northern Virginia and we used to go to the beaches there. We also went to Ocean Isle beach several summers in a row. Loved it!

  3. Susan says:

    So far, my favorite place to live has been Brooklyn, NY. I lived there long before 9/11 and worked on Wall Street. I loved the museums and the theater, the restaurants, the shopping! It’s not the same anymore for me.

  4. CJane Elliott says:

    Hi Susan. I’ve been to New York City several times but have never been to Brooklyn, if you can believe that. I’ve heard that it’s a great place.

  5. jakezwells says:

    Beautiful pics CJ. Sounds like a great read. Will put it on my list! Good luck with your party!!

  6. CJane Elliott says:

    Thanks, Jake!

  7. Gene says:

    Texas (despite its poor image) is home for me, and I enjoy it even while ignoring the politics here. I’ve lived in the California desert near Palm Springs, the arid air of Tempe, AZ, and the suburbs of Chicago (which I enjoyed second-best) in addition to the afore-mentioned Lone Star state.

  8. Carolyn says:

    Thanks for the college/town tour. I love seeing pictures of an area where a book takes place. It usually means something to the author, so it becomes part of the story for me when I read it.

    I love where I am. I can’t imagine being anywhere else. It has everything I want, except maybe better attitudes, especially towards equal rights. But we’re working on it!

  9. CJane Elliott says:

    Thanks for commenting, Carolyn! I’m glad you love where you are. I currently live in a college town in Oregon and I think they’re great.

  10. CJane Elliott says:

    Hi Gene! *waves* I have a lot of friends who live in Texas and they do love it, even though the politics aren’t great. I have hope in Wendy Davis, though!

  11. JJ says:

    What a gorgeous campus! If I had a wish, I would live in San Diego, La Jolla or Monterey, all places that I had visited. The air is so clean and the scenery is so lovely.

  12. CJane Elliott says:

    I’ve been to all those places, JJ. They are lovely. I hope you get to live there someday.

  13. H.B. says:

    Lovely pictures. I’ve always loved landscape pictures and the campus is absolutely gorgeous. I haven’t been to many places but there are parts of Boston that I’ve seen (can’t remember the streets, sorry) and found wonderful, clean and just beautiful.

  14. CJane Elliott says:

    Thanks for commenting, H.B. Boston is beautiful. I’ve only been there a few times but I remember the first time and how magical it seemed to me.

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